Standing on the brow to Reach the lost without getting in the Pit

Some Pulling out of the fire

In a world where it is becoming increasingly difficult to tell good from bad by way of reassigning definitions and amalgamating concepts, Christians must be deliberate about separating themselves from things that may leave them being mistook for being something other than representing CHRIST JESUS! There are genres of music, clothing, techniques of styling hair, practices of engaging in exercise of self-mutilation i.e. tattoos, body piercing, etc. that all make our faith second to our expression. At the same time it is important that we are relatable and not become people that other people see as so strange that they avoid conversation with us or from us. Exploring ways to achieve a balance between relatability and maintaining Christian standard has become a slippery slope for many causing some to become snared by ridicule once they have been labeled as “compromisers” while others have alienated themselves from the lost apprehending to themselves reputations of being “holier than thou”, neither result makes us effective as witnesses for the Kingdom of GOD.

Below are a few scriptures that may help us understand a bit better how to balance the expedition of reaching the lost while maintaining Christian distinction in the world. The objective of a believer ought to be to reach and not be assimilated.

Below each scripture reference are “NOTES” that encourage biblical perspective on our subject matter and lastly a conclusion thought. If you find this to be helpful perhaps you can share with someone who struggles with how to approach self-representation and/or reaching those who are in need of being born again without compromising and without alienating the lost.

 

1 Corinthians 9:19-24

19For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more. 20And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; 21To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law. 22To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. 23And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.

NOTE: the word speaks through the Apostle Paul stating the apostle condescended to others in the state they were in but does not imply that the apostle compromised moral standards or put in question his stance for holiness and separation from the world!

 

Jude vss. 17-23

17But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; 18How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts. 19These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.20But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, 21Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. 22And of some have compassion, making a difference: 23And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.

NOTE: the word states here, in the highlight, “pulling out of the fire”. Functionally, it would be impossible to get in a pit with someone and “PULL” them out!

 

Luke 15:15-16

15And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. 16And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.

NOTE: the world’s objective in relation to the believer in CHRIST is to justify itself of its evil and a major ploy of this is to try and intimidate believers to GET IN THE PIT with them! Though we are to condescend to those in the world and go where they are to pull them out, we are in no way to get in the things that they are in i.e. worldly music/entertainment, sinful places, sinful activities, carnal meditations, etc! The Christian is to maintain and sure footing on the brow of situations rather than get in them in order to pull out some from the fire of this world winning them to CHRIST!

Conclusion: There is no way to make a practice of Halloween somehow holy without confusing the onlooker of our activities; there is no way to effectively represent CHRIST performing such music as heavy metal rock, hip-hop and some other forms of music that bear a hostile and prideful spirit from the inception of those forms of entertainment, even when you change the words the spirit remains attached. The emergence of the tattoo subculture is as well a practice that produces cognitive dissonance when observing the word of GOD warning us that our BODY is “the temple of GOD” (1 Corinthians 3:16, 2 Corinthians 6:16), and this becomes a gateway for more self-abuse such as bodily augmentation and body piercings- self mutilation! Christians must seek to set themselves apart from things that may leave them mistaken as culprits in worldly exercises by those still in the world. The Bible speaks explicitly saying, “Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,” (2 Corinthians 6:17)! Christians are supposed to be lighthouses in the world pointing the way to weary travelers to the shore of safety, the LORD JESUS CHRIST! Not music cultures, social fads, ethnic creeds or any other medium is the way, only JESUS CHRIST is the way the truth and the life (John 14:6)!

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Posted in Connections, End Times, Faith, Globalism, JESUS CHRIST, Perdition, revival, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

Great Mercy for Great Challenges

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There is one attribute of the love of GOD us-ward that is perhaps the greatest, His mercy. We as humans are able to articulate that we recognize the mercies of GOD and should daily. The Bible says in Lamentations 3:22 that, “it is of the LORD’s mercies that we are not consumed”. Also, in numerous places in the scriptures we are reminded that GOD’s mercy endures FOREVER (Psalm 100:5, Psalm 136:26, Psalm 106:1, etc.). The mercy of GOD is so great and inexhaustible yet He is so careful never to give us leftovers; Lamentations then tells us the LORD’s mercies “are new every morning, great is thy [His] faithfulness”.

Because the mercy of GOD is so great it is perplexing that so many believers suffer spiritually from guilt of past sin. People commonly live up to expectations set over them and this does not exclude the expectation they set over themselves. With this in mind, the decisions made after failure can many times be the result of a person figuring low-aim choices are what’s deserved which is to live under the stigma or tarnish of their mistake, which sometimes leads to perpetuating the cycle of the old mistake. I once heard a man of GOD say, “The one thing we can never do is SURPRISE GOD!”

Christians should always strive to “live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of GOD” [Colossians 1:10]. Holiness is heaven’s standard of moral conduct for every born again believer and should always be considered as the relational behavior in our relationship with GOD. The Bible tells us to “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the LORD” [Hebrews 12:14]. Holiness is not optional and the capacity to achieve it comes in the package called grace at the time of rebirth. But when we do not make the mark (when we sin) we fortunately have an “advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” [1 John 2:1]. IT IS BECAUSE OF THE MERCIES OF GOD THAT WE ARE NOT CONSUMED.

Being that GOD has gone to such great lengths to secure for Himself a people, redeeming them with the blood of His own Son and realizing He made provision for us if we have future failures, why are so many locked in a prison of remorse who have once tasted of the goodness of JESUS CHRIST? It is healthy to feel guilt initially when a fault occurs but becomes dangerous and damaging and becomes a tool Satan uses to rob the believer of their future in CHRIST when it is mulled over. The Bible informs us “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” [1 John 1:9]; there is nothing that a believer has failed at that GOD does not already know about. GOD is the Father to a believer and every father simply wants their child to come clean and not to make the same mistake again. JESUS gave us the parable of the prodigal son to show us how GOD anticipates the drifter and the lost to come to Him for mercy [Luke 15]. As Father to the believer GOD longs to restore when a believer strays as opposed to firing them as it would be in an employee/employer relationship. Hebrews 4:16 tells us to come to the throne of grace with confidence to receive mercy and find grace to help when we need it. Since GOD has placed provision upon provision, there is only one logical answer to why a person who says they love GOD will wallow in perpetual grief, they are listening to the wrong voice.

The Devil will try every tactic possible to strip a believer of their new birth birthright which includes talking them out of forgiving themselves and trying to convince them that GOD will not forgive them. Daily, every believer should tell the LORD JESUS that they love Him and confess to themselves that JESUS loves them. A Christian convinced of the love of GOD wants to live holy, wants to pray, wants to read the word of GOD and worship GOD; no one has to convince you to do something for someone you really love. And once a Christian is convinced of the love of GOD they realize there’s no challenge too great for the mercy of GOD. “For God SO LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16]

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The Pain When Not Everyone Can Go

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For every committed and passionate Christian, where we presently are, at a given season, is not without its attachments. These attachments may range from occupations to places we minister, places we live to associations we may have as well as some associations we may not have (attached to seclusion). Our present seems to be a safe place because it’s what we are aware of and what seems we understand or at least to some degree; it is mixed with challenge as well as comforts. Though our present seems to be a safe place, that safety is perhaps the most dangerous place on Earth as it pertains to our faith walk.

Because faith itself deals with expectation and expectation is always off looming in the distant or hidden close by beneath the branches of a fig tree it is difficult, if not impossible, to embrace the comfort of the “Now” and simultaneously operate efficaciously in faith toward the living GOD- JESUS! Faith in the LORD JESUS CHRIST is consistent with always advancing and becoming a more sound human-being of a kind that is by a heavenly culture. “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be CONFORMED to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.” [Romans 8:29]

Being passionate about ANYTHING will cause a transformation and create a likening to the object of one’s passion. Being passionate about CHRIST JESUS, the greatest passion one can possess, causes one to move from a fear of Hell (or of earthly chains) to a desire to please JESUS CHRIST in their commitment in service and devotion to worship Him. The more one ingest the word of GOD and becomes a frequent traveler in the corridors of worship musing over the presence and voice of the living GOD the less their “Now” gives them satisfaction (though contentment until their change is completely achievable); these sort become cravers of doing what it takes to get closer, more intimate with GOD and very interested in what He wants from them. “Now Faith” creates a hunger for the “NEXT”, for more Kingdom on Earth.

Not that people of this thirsty faith are unappreciative of the present, not at all; but while being always active in the current time zone they are as well desiring for the next season. When a believer in JESUS realizes for themselves that “it does not yet appear” how we’re going to end up at the culmination of our faith it will fuel a desire despite trials, failures even frowning upon ego to achieve just one notch closer to the person of CHRIST to know Him in the power of His resurrection through suffering and challenge. The committed believer in CHRIST being thankful for the present day making use of every moment to be pleasing in the sight of GOD while desiring more of the Kingdom of GOD on Earth is just where GOD wants us! “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” [Romans 14:17]

It is inevitable, when a person is after the very heart of GOD they will discover the situations and people around them that are not in alignment with the same quest to be obtuse. For example, if you (the reader) are traveling at the same speed and direction of the wind (as much as you can align the direction) you would feel less turbulence from it and hear less (if any) of its roar; so it is, when it comes to one’s life operating in harmony with things and people at life’s various seasons; regarding faith in JESUS and passionately pursuing Him living by His word, if things and people around such a believer are not on the same path with at least like rapidity of motion forward there will undoubtedly be turbulence.

In the Old Testament the Prophet Elijah told his understudy Elisha that if he could see things like Elijah saw things (moving at the same pace) only then could he get what Elijah had plus an extra portion. The importance of people being in the same place when creating covenants is imperative to the harmony and health of that connection. On the opposite end of this canonical example, because John Mark was deemed, in perception, by Paul an uneven fit when it came to missionary work & passion juxtaposed to his own it created a turbulence which tore even the seasoned Barnabas from partnership with Paul. Some have supposed in conjecture that Paul was brash, but regardless of our assumptions of impetuousness the fact remains the perception of not being of kindred heart led to tumult.

As the Bible tells the Christian “Do not be yoked together with unbelievers” there is also an obvious meta implication within the borders of believer’sville. Though Christians must live and operate with resolve based on the word of GOD, it does not eliminate the pain involved with leaving things behind that will not follow, though resolve may dull it. The closer our associations and/or connections are with others the more painful it becomes when a believer advances and what they are connected to does not. This is like moving from one room to the next but a part of you does not leave the previous position as the rest of you strains to advance on. Or, imagine being tied to something stationary on one side and on the other side something else pulls you forcibly away; think of the discomfort in your joints and the pain that would ensue with each tug of the thing pulling you. Whether wanting to hold on to the norm or not desiring to pursue destiny while it loudly calls, either will bring discomfort.

Abraham had to part ways with a worldly ambitious nephew after having already left his own father’s house with Lot being the only kindred left within reach. Even though there is ample proof that Abraham made each mentioned leave with certain resolve, it is plausible that he made his separations having to deal with his own humanity, as perhaps his heart ached though he was persuaded to obey GOD (and believe GOD) when commanded to offer up Isaac.

As Abraham parted from Lot and Paul from Barnabas because of John Mark, the Christian must be determined to move forward despising, even self-inflicted, shame and pain in order to maintain their pursuit of glory that is set before them. Past failures and self-loathing are not welcome in the season of blessing, therefore if it is attempted to be held on to while destiny tugs us forward our joints and marrow suffer. Holding on to the triumphs of yesterday and enshrining them will likewise cause the believer in JESUS CHRIST to become discomfited and contorted as GOD always reaches to pull us into even greater things than what He has formerly done in and around us.

The Bible tells us that “GOD is Love” and also it informs us that love is always doing; it believes all, bears all, hopes all (or, it’s always believing, always bearing, always hoping); Love does not sleep (slumbers not) and it is always victorious (it never fails). Love is always in motion forward and upward, lifting us and advancing us. Therefore, we must give all diligence not to hold to things that are not moving at the velocity of CHRIST’ love.

Paul wrote and said, in so many words [paraphrase], “though I am buffeted with perils, nakedness, threats from battles of weapons, dangerous heights and treacherous depths, stress of life, lack, none of these “WHOS” will separate me from the love of Him who is Love!” Our humanity reminds us that we are still in the flesh often through pain. There is pain we merely endure and some we cause and become pained upon realizing what we’ve caused it. In enduring hardness as a good soldier of JESUS CHRIST, which is the only path to spiritual elevation, we must be like minutemen ready to abandon whatever hinders us from being mobile in GOD’s Kingdom for Kingdom’s sake.

Sometimes, the end result for many of our connections is the pain when not everyone can go where GOD is taking us. In every alliance, future possibility of mass casualties is reduced when we measure to see if the movement of the object of our affinity is moving at the speed of our affection toward the Father of Lights, the King. Not that the situation or person is inherently bad but bad for the believer in hot pursuit of the Almighty.

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Guilty Stain of Divorce

Divorce

One enemy against the moral fiber of United States social construct is DIVORCE! Divorce for most is like a punch in the gut that some never completely recover from, carrying emotional wounds for years after the ink has dried on court documents. When children are involved in divorce, we have allowed ourselves to buy into the LIE that nothing has to change for the child and things will continue as normal in parenting only “mommy and daddy won’t be together”. This is a lame attempt for people to justify themselves, or perhaps not send the child into an immediate panic before the process completes. The truth is that divorce, unless the marriage was merely a business contract, rattles the existence of everyone connected to it; in-laws, friends, children in the marriage, nieces and nephews and siblings.

 

Divorce has gradually become as mindless an action as filing bankruptcy in America! And like bankruptcy, there is damage to repair in order to rebuild credibility and emotional soundness (for those who were emotionally invested). In Christian churches the divorce rate is shameful at best when described. Fifty percent of all marriages end in divorce in America; depending on which brand of Christian you are determines if you’re less likely than the general populous and your group (i.e. Catholic, Protestant, Apostolic, etc.) dictates the percentage of the difference. Nevertheless, divorce remains a plague and an uppercut that leaves shell-shocked divorcees dazed and out of focus from becoming their most productive selves. In the church there is an added factor; when a committed believer suffers divorce it not only becomes an emotional wound to bear but also a challenge to the believer’s testimony for JESUS CHRIST.

If more people were warned beforehand of the scars brought on by divorce during the prelude and counselling period to marriage, more people perhaps would think twice before marrying and/or before divorce seeking alternatives through marital support services.

 

There is so much going on in our world. As the Church of JESUS CHRIST, believers can’t afford more of the casualties nor the time wasted in divorce. Facing things to come such as a move toward a one world government opening the path for the emergence of the Anti-Christ and a period of Great Tribulation on Earth, there is no more critical time for born again Christians to allow CHRIST to shine through their relationships than now. Christians must show that a living God is not only able to keep them while being single but also champion the testimony that the same God can influence marriage through the faith of married believers.

 

As our nation is challenged more and more by moral depravity eventually we must face the fact that broken people produce broken environments; brokenness most times, more than not, has its origin from the family (broken homes). In these times Christian believers must make every effort to fight for their own fort. Christian pastors must watch over Christian marriages with intent to ward off threats. Friends of Christian married couples who themselves are Christians must be a support to encourage adhesion between those married.

Though divorce is not the unforgivable sin, it is a distracting stain on our testimony for CHRIST that is not lightly regarded by those that a divorced witness of JESUS must bear witness.

Yours Truly,

John Q. Divorcee

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Land of Gross NARCISSISM: Home of the Free? Or Home of the Bound?

Voluminous Narcissism

NARCISSISM is BONDAGE! Worldwide, but particularly in the United States of America, we are in a massive culture shift. Everything that was once held as normal is challenged, some good, some questionable and others downright destructive as it pertains to human social roles that contribute to healthy societal advancement.

It is when we start propagating that neither is a mother or a father particularly important but only that a child has need of someone to give them compassion and provisions that we begin to unravel the thread of Human Continuity both PHYSIOLOGICALLY and SPIRITUALLY.

The Body of CHRIST has come under certain attack by proliferating subcultures that aim to undermine the Right of the Christian to BELIEVE the Word of GOD. This has been easily infiltrated against all faith-based communities in the United States due to a longstanding status of spiritual lethargy, especially that of Christendom. At the sequestering of the “non-offensive” so-called preaching of the Gospel of JESUS CHRIST many churches have been reduced to motivational depots or weekly prosperity seminars and the preaching of HOLINESS UNTO the LORD has been put out the door and sat on the back porch.

Recent images in the media, as seen in the photo of this post, should alarm every believer of any faith but particularly Christians (Born Again Believers in JESUS CHRIST).

The Times are conditioning the WORLD to be more accepting of boldly defying that which is logical and taking unprecedented ease to dive belly first into the bottomless abyss of DEBAUCHERY. Even now the secular system grows hungry to receive the person of the Anti-Christ in its fearless abhorring of the things of Yahweh.

Today we have closed the pages of rebuke, instruction in righteous living and leading the lost out of darkness in exchange for mainstream acceptance and the dubious escape from ridicule.

As men (and women) heavily indulge in themselves the fear of Yahweh is lost and as a result the security of our times fade to be less and less clear.  As our politicians, celebrities and engagers of “blurred-line subcultures” tell us we need MORE alleged FREEDOM, are we not progressively mutating into beast void of GOD? We are near fully come into the era of the ubiquitous influence of man, what man(6) wants what man(6) says what man(6) thinks is all that matters.

Freedom unbridled, and not Liberty, is Bondage indeed. Liberty is what our forefathers sought to bring us in the United States of America. Liberty is freedom that has boundaries so that we don’t impede upon the freedom of our neighbor. “Give me Liberty, or give me death” once said by Patrick Henry exemplifies the quest that our Nation should be pursuing. But where our Nation has erred in logic and has abandoned IN GOD WE TRUST, Christians have retreated from testifying of the One True GOD and cower in lethargy and sensationalism.

Only where the Spirit of the LORD is, there is Liberty! It will not be a Political Uprising that will deter us from the path of inevitable bondage but rather a Spiritual Uprising of the Body of CHRIST fighting not a carnal/natural battle, but a warfare in the spirit through prayerful supplication, intercession, fasting, praise and holiness.

In a land once founded for purposes of escaping tyranny and persecutions, the Church Community (of the Christian church) now has come under attack in a day of technological and economic advancement with spiritual famine. The media, government and scoffers have become a modern day Sennacherib lulling the church-world into spiritual hunger through its (Christendom’s) anguish of rejection.

So long as the church-world (Christendom) will imperil its boundaries and standards of faith-culture and preaching in fear of ridicule it is not free, though it be animated…it is not free, though it makes sound…it is bond and near unto death.

We Must combat this spirit of Narcissism that has taken over our society, is killing family structure and renders the infected believer powerless against a spiritual enemy. In this we will stand to bear a light for the lost who are seeking salvation which is in JESUS CHRIST alone, and in that save our own souls.

2 Chronicles 7:14- “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

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Endure hardness… Work out your salvation

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Few Esteem Toil

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“For many are called….”
– Minister to those in despair
– Minister to the sick
– Minister to those who lack
– Minister to those who are shut in
– Minister to the unregenerate
– Study
– Pray
– Fast
– Intercede
– Restore the fallen
– Correct
– Confront wickedness
– Encourage

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Where there is no Vision…

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In CHRIST JESUS we must…

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Display Case Preachers

Display Case Pastor

Display Case Preachers:

  • Only studies for the upcoming message
  • Prays before bed, over meals and when waking ONLY
  • Don’t visit the sick
  • Don’t seek after the fallen
  • Stays in the “Study” during prayer meeting
  • Does not evangelize
  • Does not mind absence of church growth so long as it doesn’t remove them from their platform
  • Is elated simply to hold their title and receive accolades

There are so many communities around the United States hungry for real leaders of the LORD JESUS CHRIST. Our cities are littered with those who love to receive fanfare amid a few diligent workers in the Gospel field. As we intermittently see social conflict outbreaks in the U.S. that later attract marchers and activist, mostly perhaps interested in the spotlight, we must NOW call for an accountability of faith leadership in the community beyond the FOUR WALLS.

If a group is in a community claiming to be a ministry we must begin to ask a simple and fair question, “what SERVICE are you bringing or offering our community?” With the coming of the LORD JESUS CHRIST being close at hand is it a time to immerse ourselves in anniversary and appreciation gatherings when the world is in such a dilapidated state? While the church in the United States of America is engrossed in hero-worship festivities and antics during gatherings there are serious issues of violence, sickness, failure of the family structure and more not to mention international issues that Christendom in the U.S. can hardly focus on for the distraction of infiltrated pop culture.

Parishioners mostly resemble their leadership like children resemble their parents. It has always BEEN time for leaders to take to the streets with their parishioners as a preemptive measure against riots, social decay and the void of a sound knowledge of the living GOD. The reason so many churches exist in inner-city communities is because there is little to be expected of leadership than to stand behind a podium and SPEAK. Because this standard of expectancy is so low it makes the seat of leadership seem to be a place of ease and celebration, no wonder EVERYONE is an Apostle Today!!!

I believe if there is ever a conquest of ISIS, or some similar group, in the United States of America they will visit churches that have Display Case Preachers first demanding they convert or DIE. In these times, it would behoove leaders who are in it for ease and pampering to step down!

For those leaders who would like to be agents of change in the world, NOW is the time (if you’re not presently) to move out of your display case to change the world!!!

“He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.”– Psalm 24:4

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